Owens-Illinois, Inc., (NYSE: OI), the world's largest glass packaging maker, has named Erik Bouts as the company's new president of O-I Europe. Effective January 1, 2013, Bouts succeeds Jose Lorente, who will leave the company after a 34-year career with O-I.
As the leader of O-I's largest region, Bouts will accelerate O-I's efforts to strengthen its leading market position in Europe. In 2013, O-I will invest $175 million (€140 million) in its European facilities, improving quality, sustainability and capabilities to better support the growing need of European customers for more sustainable and healthy glass packaging solutions.
"Erik's experience in leading major manufacturing companies and his strong focus on execution and results will be invaluable on our journey to strengthen our competitiveness in Europe," said Al Stroucken, O-I chairman and chief executive officer. "He comes to O-I with a strong record of successfully rallying organisations around new ideas and strategies, while building strong relationships with customers, business partners and the workforce."
Bouts has over 25 years of experience leading diverse executive management teams. Prior to joining O-I, he was CEO of The Glidden Company, part of AkzoNobel Architectural Paints Division in the USA, where he was instrumental in spearheading major transformational programs and developing market focused strategies to drive growth. Bouts holds a Masters in Business Administration and Economics from the University of Tilburg (the Netherlands) and will be based at O-I's European Headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.
O-I's European business comprises 8,000 employees in 11 different countries. With more than $3 billion (€2.3 billion) of sales in 2011, the region represents approximately 40 per cent of the company's global sales.